[Het Parool, The Netherlands]



Liberation, France

The Awakening of the 'White American Male'


"It's super-good news for America and the rest of the world. The White American - whom McCain calls Joe the Plumber or Palin calls Joe Sixpack - is no longer blinded by lies …The White American male has closed himself off from old-fashioned ideology and has entered the rational era. The White American is no longer fooled."


By Annette Lévy-Willard*



Translated By Kate Davis


October 29, 2008


France - Liberation - Original Article (French)

Senator Barack Obama: His breathtaking rise to prominence fascinates the world. It appears that what many have called his 'professorial style' is just what Americans feel they need.


BBC NEWS VIDEO: U.S. rivals make last push for votes, Oct. 31, 00:01:34WindowsVideo

The American is not always a cretin, it must be said. Having covered Bush’s reelection campaign four years ago, I saw how that debilitating cocktail of “gay marriage-abortion-family-religion-terrorism,” mixed into the cauldron labeled “moral values broth,” moved entire states into W’s column.


The “true” American, according to conservative mythology, is White, with family, patriotic, extremely religious, hates socialism, communism, foreigners and paying taxes. He is so naive that he believes he can save America by attacking Iraq and, at any rate, he has invested himself in a mission: to export his model to other people (without asking their opinion).


This American, if he ever existed, no longer exists. This is the terrible discovery that McCain and the Republicans have just made. And it's super-good news for America and the rest of the world. It is five days before the election and the situation has become clear. Obama is going to win because the America to whom McCain and Palin are speaking just isn't hearing anything they’re saying.


The White American - whom McCain calls Joe the Plumber or Palin calls Joe Sixpack - is no longer blinded by lies. He has seen the war in Iraq and is suffering through a crisis, while Republicans spouting about abortion, taxes or an American victory in Iraq no longer move him. The latest poll shows that half of White men are going to vote Democrat. For the first time in thirty years!


They want someone who speaks concretely, calmly, moderately: in the center. They refuse to scorn the intellectual, the notorious “elite” that the McCain camp denounces - Obama graduated from Harvard. They refuse to be afraid (of bin Laden, of the enemies of America, etc.) The White American male has closed himself off from old-fashioned ideology and has entered the rational era.




Indeed, it was a Republican President Ronald Reagan, who intelligently said: “Whatever else history may say about me when I am gone, I hope it will record that I appealed to your best hopes, not your worst fears.” The White American is no longer fooled. Just because Sarah Palin is a super-mom (five kids), governor of Alaska - and is also sexy - does that mean Americans should identify with her? The men allowed themselves to be seduced a bit in the beginning, but the crushing majority of women didn't fall for biological blackmail. American women aren't voting for Palin. And if one day they choose to vote for a woman, it will be for her ideas, not for her “feminine nature.” The Women’s Lib movement finally won the battle, female voters are, after all, as good (or better) than any other voters … 



The Black American has also been emancipated in this extraordinary adventure. He has overcome his suspicion of an almost-White Obama who refuses to talk in terms of Black or White, of minorities and of quotas, and of recriminations and hatreds. Who doesn’t speak “ghetto” but who expresses himself like any chic Harvard professor. And the crowds of African-Americans are rushing to vote early, with an absolute enthusiasm for this candidate who doesn’t speak in the old clichés of the Black community. And as they say, they too are rational: they're proud but they aren’t voting for him because he’s Black. They just like the candidate.




We can continue this tour of real Americans - and not those dreamed up by the conservatives. The Hispanic American is rushing to the polls. The 44 percent who voted for Bush in the last election have changed their minds: Hispanics are overcoming their traditional antipathy toward Blacks and are putting Obama-Biden signs on their lawns, putting bumper stickers on the back of their cars. They will probably tip some of the states that are wavering, and if not this time, they will be in four years, given the rising demographics of these new Americans.


Finally, the young American, the young American. They don’t want an arrogant and hated America. They don’t want a rambling old White man. They don’t care about color. They want hope. Solidarity. The Republicans retain their bastions in the rural areas and among religious extremists, nostalgics and probably some racists. But their power is dissolving. America is deeply preoccupied with altering the entire political map. The Republican red between the two blue Democratic coasts has melted. The Republicans will lose about 60 senate seats - and the majority. There aren't two Americas. Only the Americans. And they have - as the winner of the Nobel Prize for economics, Paul Krugman, says - rediscovered the virtue of “seriousness” in the face of a world that seems to be crumbling.


[Editor's Note: The Republicans risk losing their ability to filibuster bills proposed by the Democratic majority. In the U.S. Senate, a supermajority of 60 senators is required to end a filibuster. Democrats hold a majority 51 seats and are aiming to increase that to 60 seats in the Nov. 4 election].


*Annette Lévy-Willard is the author of The War Over Sex in America [Chroniques de la guerre du sexe en Amérique] (Grasset Livre de Poche).










































[Posted by WORLDMEETS.US October 31, 2:34am]